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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: Music (03/08/07)

TITLE: "Special" Music
By Dawn Olsen


The evening sun shone through the plain golden colored stained glass windows as we gathered for Sunday evening church. For us, evening church began at around 6:30 or 7 PM with Bible classes for all ages. Eventually we'd rejoin the adults upstairs for a half hour of singing and maybe testimony time. And after that there would be an hour long sermon ending at 9 PM, we hoped. Of course, we would sometimes fold paper fans and try to cool off in the summer and all year round we'd pull out paper and pencil and draw pictures, take notes or write notes to our friends, probably mostly the later,but before the sermon we always had what was called "special" music.

Sometimes the special music was kinda unique! Maybe it would be an old farmer, cleaned up and singing a solo. Or a ladies trio or duet or a young person playing a piece on the piano or on a musical instrument. We never knew just what to expect. In a neighboring town, one fellow would be asked to whistle a hymn and he could whistle with all kinds of trills and it really was beautiful! Sometimes it was a last minute deal and not rehearsed much, if at all, or maybe folks would sing out of tune or maybe they would sing in such a way that made us kids snicker or giggle behind our hands. But for the most part, it was simply simple country folks doing their best to sing for the Lord with the best of their ability and from their hearts.

Then it came time for me to leave home and go far away to a big city to go to school. I couldn't always get a ride to Sunday evening church but when I did go I would always be surprised. Guess it wasn't in style to sing for half an hour like we would back home. And perhaps it was my imagination but people didn't seem as enthusiastic and the music was much quieter in such a big room. Then, before I knew it, in the middle of a song, tears would be streaming down my cheeks, as I remembered the folks at home, loudly singing old hymns of the faith. There'd be big ol' Charlie, whose hands were so big yours disappeared when he shook hands with you, asking for his favorite and singing it off tune, loudly proclaiming his "Amens" whenever he felt it was needed. Maybe there'd be an older lady or two with warbly alto voices. Or maybe one of my brothers would ask for "A Child of the King", his favorite at the time. And well, I just plain missed all the "special" music and all those home folks, with all their faults and quirks, still singing those simple songs that helped us make it through another week.

Yes, music, even the simple unrehearsed off tune kind, sung joyfully to the Lord, speaks to my spirit and I think must bring joy to the Lord. Scripture says there'll be no more tears in heaven so I guess it will just be all joy before long because we'll be home and singing His praises with the folks from back home. It won't matter that we didn't sing in fancy choirs or sang off key because then we'll be with Him and we'll all sing in tune!

Hope I'll see you there for the "special" music!

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This article has been read 453 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Jacquelyn Horne03/17/07
Oh, what memories we carry into life with us! How we cherish them. Good memories here.
Donna Powers 03/18/07
This brought me back to the many times I've heard wonderful "special music", and how sometimes even a "joyful noise" from a fully offered heart can touch us so profoundly. Nice work
Angela M. Baker-Bridge03/20/07
Oh the number of Sunday nights our Pastor would suddenly ask all the kids to come to the platform and then he'd tell us what to sing! None of our parents would allow us to get out of it either! Thanks for bringing us back to our roots.
Beth LaBuff 06/02/07
This brings back so many memories of my growing up. I could see it clearly.

But your Dad had the most beautiful, resonant voice.

You must come visit us, you'd feel right at home at the chapel here.

I'm glad you chose to write this down.